Coillte Woodland Sale in Riverstick Under Public Discussion
Residents in Riverstick, Belgooly and its environs have been collaborating since notice of the sale of 22 acres at Ballymartle Woods in Riverstick in early December. A petition launched to share with the public has since garnered public support with 1250 signatures. Residents have also positively engaged with the forest owners, Coillte, a commercial forestry business in Ireland, owned by the state.
Following on from a meeting with Coillte, residents are compiling a recreation/trail proposal and a broader vision for the use of the wood into 2022 and beyond. This proposal will draw on the public’s imagination and ideas for the future development of Riverstick and Belgooly as sustainable and connected communities.
Residents are keen to see the sale of the 22 acres of woodland paused and to guarantee it remains as a local amenity in its entirety. The pandemic has showed many the value of local community and amenities for walking and recreation, and there has been broad support for feeding into a future vision of how we imagine our public spaces. In parallel, Cork County Council has also been active in rolling out much needed local infrastructure in recent months to access the woodland.
The proposed woodland sale is also in the context of the recently published targets set by the Irish government in the Climate Action plan to achieve a planting rate of 8,000 ha/year – to increase carbon sequestration and limiting deforestation rates to less than 900 ha/year by 2030. Through these actions the government aims to gradually reduce CO2 to reach its zero emissions goal by 2050.
Climate goals may only be achieved with broad support and all of society acting and working together. If you are interested in sharing your views and ideas please contact: VillageVision2022@gmail.com